I wrote this article years back, but recently I found myself struggling with similar issues and doing similar dealings. Hope you enjoy the quick read! Illustrations done by a close friend, Ehsanur Raza Ronny. =)


Getting up from bed is probably one of the most heartless activities that fall with profound effects in our lives, especially if you have to be in the car by eight. Normally in such situations, especially if you don’t have anyone to wake you up by nagging you for an hour or so or by dumping cold water on your eyes, you do so by setting the alarm to loud settings and at 7:15 am., only to trigger the sequence of events as follows:

7:15 Shock: This is the shortest stage of coping with the change in environment, although it can be the one hardest on the mind and body. One moment you are asleep, dreaming of life in an intricately detailed Candy Land jumping from one cloud to another of Candy-floss, and the next moment you are thrown into a terrible, candy-less bitter reality. Your alarm is going off, your room is a wreck, you still have one of your shoes on from yesterday, and you slept on your hard-covered biology book all night. It is during this stage that the mind uses numbness to cope with the idea that you must get up and go to class, as you still remain unaware of your position.

7:16 Denial: Once the alarm has been shut off, and once your body has dealt with the distress that comes with shock, the second coping mechanism sets in. We refuse to believe that the alarm has gone off, or that we must attend class. For example, the gratuitous use of the snooze button is considered an act of denial.

7:25 Anger: When you remove the one shoe that you slept in the night before and throw it against the wall, only to get a reply from your furious mom, shouting disrespectful statements concerning your professor, your classroom, and your life, you may be entering the anger stage. Anger could also entail violent acts, such as shouting or hitting, towards your pillow, bedding, or anyone trying to wake you up.

7:35 Bargaining: Bargaining is something that happens between you and God. You promise that you’ll be good for a whole year and even maybe confess to that murder, if He just lets you skip this one class. The second half of the bargaining mechanism is dealing with the Devil. Common to pre-eight o’clock class coping, dealing with the devil can involve selling your soul in exchange for your professor “coming into a bit of an accident.” You know, don’t kill him or anything, but if you could make him immobile…

7:40 Guilt/Self-blaming: You decide to go to class. You signed up for this subject. You knew it was going to be at 8:15 three times a week. You knew, and yet you did nothing to prevent it. No one else is to blame except for you. In fact, you are volunteering to pay around Tk.12,000 per month to wake up at seven in the morning and take notes at college. It is entirely your fault for being in the present situation. This stage is especially hard to get through because it is totally true.

7:45 Depression: Thoughts of death enter your mind. The reality hits. You will be spending the next 40 minutes in a cramped lecture room listening to your classmates barfing up responses with their eye-lids barely lifted up with paper-clips, pretending to be awake. You come to the more terrible realization that you will be doing the very same things.

7:50 Hope: As you are putting on your dress and packing up your books, you may begin to think of remote possibilities. Like that your professor is in bed with a case of the bronchitis or fever or that the “test” that appears on the syllabus scheduled for today is a practical joke. Or that maybe, just maybe, you’ll get hit by a truck, or it’ll start snowing due to extreme rapid weather changes and you’ll be preserved in the ice until hundreds of years in the future, when there’ll be genetically engineered human clones to attend class for you. Or better yet – that in the future they have finally forged a non-schooling classless society.

7:55 Acceptance: Finally, after many struggles, you accept the fact that you must face the world and go to class. Either that or you can accept the fact that there is no way that you can possibly attend class. Don’t worry about what your professor might feel about this; I’m sure that, in time, he will be able to cope with your absence. After all, you tried.

Link to article in Daily Star.
Link to article in Daily Sun.

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